The National Assembly has stopped the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) from procuring helicopters for surveillance owing to the firm’s failure to secure the lawmakers’ approval before advertising to sell the four old and idle ones in the airports.
Its Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Usman Gur Mohammed disclosed this to journalists at the ongoing International Conference on Energy, Power Systems Operations and Planning (ICEPSOP 2020) in Abuja.
Citing the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) Regulation on Investment (2013) on Procurement, he explained that the TCN does not require the lawmakers’ approval for advert.
According to him, in line with the enabling act, the TCN will only seek the approval of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) after it concludes its evaluation.
The TCN boss, however, noted that upon the completion of the National Assembly investigation, the company will still comply with the law to procure the new helicopter.
Mohammed said that the four old helicopters have been in the airport(s) for over 15 years.
He stressed that the TCN resolved to sell them competitively in order to raise money to procure modern helicopters with security gadgets sophisticated enough to identify faults on lines.
He dropped the hint that the TCN has completed the evaluation process and is looking forward to present it to the appropriate authority for approval.
The TCN boss said that “We have about four old helicopters that have been in the airport(s) for over 15 years. So, we took a decision to sell them, and we advertise them competitively. We have done the evaluation.
“We are going to forward it to the appropriate authority for approval. Once it is approved, we are going to buy other helicopters that will solve our problems. There are modern helicopters that have security gadgets that will help us to identify faults on the line.”
“We are complying with the NERC regulation on investment (2013) on procurement.
They (NASS) said we advertised the helicopter for sale but that we didn’t get approval before we advertised. But if you check the public procurement act, we don’t require approval before we can advertise.
“We require approval after we have finished the evaluation before the Federal Executive Council approval. But then, let them finish their investigation there is nothing we can do than comply with the rules.”
Commenting on the conference, he said that it was a collaboration between the academia and the industry to address the challenges in the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI).
He said that the grid consists of the transmission company, distribution companies and the customers connected to them.
Mohammed noted that the present challenge is that of the gap between the academic researches in the Nigerian universities and the industry.
He submitted that “the first take away there is the fact that we are now trying to focus our research on the industry, which means the industry is going to support the research so that the research will analyze and help us make suggestions on how to solve our problem.”